Speakers at #DroneCon2019

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Mark Lawton, Chief Engineering Surveyor

Mark has worked in the construction industry for most of his working life. He has assisted in the building of many large civil engineering projects covering highways, tunnels, rail, oil and gas refineries and water treatment plants. Mark gained Chartered Engineer status through the Chartered Institution of Civil Engineers and uses his experience and knowledge to assist academia in teaching engineering surveying and how it is used in industry.

Mark leads and chairs a number of groups that are related to academia, professional membership and best practice for the industry. He is the lead Engineering Survey Manager on Highways England's largest road project, a £1.bn 30km bypass and improvement scheme with over 70 structures. He deployed a variety of geospatial technologies to improve the efficiency, quality and safety of the engineering tasks. These range from site survey control to as-built scanning and handover, using GPS/GNSS/Total station/laser scanning/drone/3DMC. The new technology of Drones and the specific payload they carry is changing the way we survey, record and make safer sites - utlising both media grade and survey grade drones.


Andy Givens, Senior Applications Engineer - Geospatial


Andy is currently working as senior applications engineer on geospatial product for Topcon Positioning Great Briton, providing product support on survey grade positioning technologies and solutions, including total stations, GNSS, 3d Laser scanning, mobile mapping and UAV's, along with associated software packages. He has over 20 years’ experience in the survey industry providing a high level of customer service and training to many companies who require the use of positioning sensors and software.


Andy started his career working in the service centre repairing instruments and then qualified as an electronics engineer with a BEng in electronic engineering and later obtained an MSc in satellite positioning technology from the University of Nottingham. He is passionate about finding workable solutions with both current and future technologies for those people who have a need for it, from single points to photogrammetry, 3D models and all things point cloud related


Dr Bilal Kaddouh, Research Fellow

Dr Bilal Kaddouh is a Research Fellow at the University of Leeds focusing on the design of aerial robotics systems for the autonomous inspection and maintenance of city infrastructure. His research interest is centred around the field of robotics and unmanned systems design, management and control.


Bilal is a qualified drone operator with 6 years’ experience. He has wide experience in autonomous UAS development and operation and has organized and been involved in, numerous flight test campaigns. Bilal concentrates on applied engineering problems hence flight testing and robotic demonstrations make up a good part of his work. He aims to bridge the field know-how together with the research and technical knowledge to design new specialized systems that are made to operate in real environments and not just in a sterilised lab. Bilal holds a BEng in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the American University of Beirut, a MSc in Robotics from King’s College London and a PhD in Aerospace Engineering from The University of Manchester.


KarenHolden, Founder, Managing Director and Solicitor

Karen oversees amongst others scale-up, commercial and technology clients that engage the firm for commercial drafting , expansion support , launch overseas , finance and investment or sale. Amongst these clients she frequently acts for innovative companies and departments, such as drone related businesses - be it those offering drone services and products or those looking for suppliers and in-house or third party drone operators.


Karen has also worked for traditional rail and transport companies looking for innovative tools to benefit their business. She advises on intellectual property, regulations, drafting compliant policies, GDPR policies, risk assessments and auditing/amending contracts with third parties or staff. Karen sits on the Drone2 Committee to offer legal support and guidance to public and private sector customers on the benefits, best practice and legalities of using drones. She spoke at the Telegraph’s Drone conference and the De Vere Hotel Property & Construction innovation conference in 2018 and has published several articles about drone use in the property and construction sector.


Karen’s firm is listed in the Legal 500 (and has been since the year it applied) and was awarded the Most Innovative London Law Firm. She has personally won Best Business Women in Legal Services, Legal Adviser of the Year 2017 and Freedom of the City. Karen is frequently asked to give specialist talks and give expert advice at the Business Funding Show, The Telegraph Drone conference, the GDPR London Summit , the House of Commons , the Law Society, University of Law and Natwest. She has also appeared on various radio stations, been published in the press and writes several monthly blogs.

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Ed Klinger, CEO

Ed Leon Klinger is the CEO of Flock, a VC-backed, London-based insurtech startup pioneering the use of Big Data in insurance. Flock has launched Europe’s first ‘pay-as-you-fly’ drone insurance app in partnership with Allianz, the world’s largest aviation insurer. 


Ed’s background is in academia; he obtained a Masters in Engineering Science from the University of Oxford where he specialised in brain cancer technologies and his second Masters in Technology Policy from the University of Cambridge where he focused on quantified risk analysis for Artificial Intelligence, Autonomous Vehicles and drones. Ed’ is now focused on reinventing insurance for the autonomous world.


Paul Lindup, Infrastructure, Construction & Engineering - Air Operations

Paul has 21 years of Aviation experience. This started when he left college and spent nine years in the Army Air Corps working in various roles including rear flight crew. Paul then spent 11 years in the Police working with Manned Aviation, operating the Police Role Equipment on board the then Essex Air Support Unit aircraft, then branching out in the unmanned aviation sector by gaining his commercial clearances to run his own Aerial Photography business. This continued along-side training at the Essex Police Drone school whilst a serving officer.


Paul set up the Essex Police Drone Prosecution process liaising with other forces to build up a robust system that could be rolled out. During this time Paul dealt with a Drone Operator in Essex that flew too close to a train and then found out about Network Rails Air Operations team. Paul was successful in becoming part of the team at Network Rail and is now the accountable manager for in-house Drones and the Project Manager for manned and unmanned aviation projects for Network Rail.


Gail Orenstein, Drone Photojournalist


Born in the USA and presently based in London, Gail has been a professional photographer for 23 years and is a FAA and CAA certified drone pilot - using drones in her journalism in Africa, Asia, Europe and the Middle East. She has won many awards for her work and has travelled the globe having worked in 84 countries and droning in 23 countries.


Gail was the first female civilian to use a drone to cover Iraqi Kurdistan during the Mosul offensive in 2017. Extending from her experience as a journalist and having decades of experience working in remote, harsh environments and conflict areas Gail has worked with governments on rebuilding infrastructure in these difficult and challenging environments. She works with Enterprise Security Architect Robert Hooker.  Gail's work has been distributed globally to prominent organisations including CBS news, The Guardian, The Times of London, Variety, The Washington Post, TIME, The BBC, National Geographic and many, many more. She also teaches drone journalism, writes about UAV technology and is an educator. Gail is the author of a new book, "Droning Through Wires: one women's journey droning in conflict zones and humanitarian crises”.

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Phil Buchan, COO

Phil joined Cyberhawk in 2010 as part of the founding management team. An MBA, Chartered Engineer and Fellow of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers, Phil has been at the forefront of introducing UAV inspection and asset management solutions in multiple sectors including oil & gas, construction, civil infrastructure, electricity transmission and thermal & renewable power generation.

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Stuart Thomas, Survey Manager


With 25 years’ experience working across the UK, USA and Australia, Stuart brings a wealth of knowledge of topographic surveying, 3D visualisation and volumetric analysis to Cyberhawk. He has worked extensively in the construction, waste management and renewables sectors. He leads Cyberhawk’s team of Land Surveyors and specialises in the acquisition of orthophotos and digital elevation models.


Julian Norton, Business Development Manager for Construction

Holding a Bachelor’s Degree in Computing and Cartography from Oxford and a Master’s Degree in Surveying from UCL, Julian Norton started his career in the oil and gas industry as an industrial plant surveyor. He worked on a wide variety of projects, from the North Sea via Africa to Antarctica. During this time, he also worked for a start-up that developed photogrammetry solutions, before joining Cyra at the very start of the laser scanning revolution.


After the company merged with Leica Geosystems, Julian held positions with responsibility worldwide in sales, product management and business development, advancing laser scanning both commercially and technically. Julian is working now for Pix4D in Switzerland, the industry leader in professional drone mapping and photogrammetric software solutions to create 2D maps, 3D models and point cloud. With Pix4D, Julian is back in the start-up environment again, pioneering the application of UAV solutions in his role as Business Development Manager. Pix4D’s applications include the use of cameras on tower cranes to provide mapping images for BIM models.


Sion Rowlands, European Sales Manager

Sion has over 10 years’ experience focusing on business development and Geospatial consulting throughout the United Kingdom and Europe. Sion received an MSc in Geomatics from the University of Salford and a BSc in Geomatics from Newcastle University.

Throughout his career he has focused on introducing innovative geospatial solutions across the survey, mapping and construction sectors. Now, in his role with Microdrones, Sion is introducing a survey grade solution with end to end workflow, to businesses throughout Europe.


Jonathan Douglas-Smith, Commercial Department

Jonathan Douglas-Smith is a commercial representative of Intelligent Energy specialising in UAV products. Jonathan is responsible for market engagement and business development to facilitate the growth of the hydrogen powered UAV market.   Jonathan has experience in bringing new and emerging technologies to market and specialises in highlighting technical advantages of products to a non-technical audience.   Jonathan has an academic background in mechanical and manufacturing engineering. He has previous experience in the renewables industry, consumer electronics industry and the finance industry.


Samuel Treloar, Chief Pilot & CAA Accountable Manager

Sam has been with Geocurve since its beginnings and now runs its UAS operations as the Chief Pilot and Accountable manager. His professional, practical and methodical way of approaching business, clients and tasks comes with him from his military career.


From conducting a 230km UAS survey of the Norfolk broads national park, trials with the Royal Navy or accuracy trials with the Environment Agency using the Leica Pegasus backpack along the River Thames scanning over 180km of flood embankment, Sam has been involved in all aspects of the company.

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Mark Jones, Head of RUAS

Mark Jones is Head of RUAS Unmanned Aviation Services for the Blakebrook Group of Companies. RUAS provide CAA approved drone training, drone service delivery to industry and counter drone consultation. After a short spell in the RAF (25 years) Mark managed several drone projects in the military and emergency services sector before starting his own successful unmanned aviation business. Mark then joined RUAS and has been running the longest standing drone training company since 2017


Pae Natwilai, CEO & Founder

(29 year old) female tech entrepreneur Pae is the CEO and founder of Trik, a drone software that creates a customised Google map for structural inspections of buildings. Orignially from Thailand, Pae is an engineer, a designer, a business innovator and a thought leader in drone innovation and digital construction. Pae is known for her unique approach in coming up with new technology innovation and business offerings. She was selected to be on the Forbes 30 under 30 Europe, Industry 2018 and she has won several innovation, design and engineering awards throughout her career.